Monday, November 19, 2012

Hello Everyone!

Well, as usual, I will start off this week with some funny experiences/impressions of Mexico!

1) I am so glad that I have had the chance to be a valuable resource in helping Elder Miguel learn the English language. Every Elder that cannot speak English is supposed to be studying English while the gringos study Spanish. I can successfully say that I have taught Elder Miguel two phrases. 1) "Can I get an Amen!" (Said in the African American preacher voice of course) and 2) "Let's blow this popsicle stand!" 

2) We were eating in a restaurant with a member and, of course, I ordered Yoli to drink (I think I already talked about this but it is my new addiction). The waitress brought out the drink but in this cool, old glass bottle (like the old Coke bottles in the United States). I may or may not have paid the waitress 5 pesos under the table to take the bottle with me.

3) I hate it when this happens but sometimes when I am talking to members, I will just randomly blurt out something in English without thinking about what I am saying. They just blankly stare at me. Always uncomfortable.

4) To climb up to our apartment, there is this SUPER tight spiral metal staircase that we have to climb. I have become the master in bending down and contorting my body in just the right moments. But one day, when we were leaving the apartment, I do not know what happened but suddenly I tripped and fell down a few stairs and was literally hanging over the side of the rail holding on and staring at the ground. I almost died. Not really. But almost.

5) We have an investigator named Nacho. Nough said.

Well, I hope that you all are doing splendidly well! It is Thanksgiving this week right? I cannot remember the exact date but...Happy Thanksgiving! Anyway, this week was really good! We worked super hard and were able to get four new investigators! So things are starting to pick up and look good. I have realized that I do not talk a lot about experiences that I have during lessons and so I have a really cool one that I can share this week. We have two investigators named Edalit and Lucio. They are a really young married couple and she is pregnant with their first child right now. Yesterday, I was on divisions with one of the Zone Leaders and we had our second lesson with them. We started off very casually and I asked her, "So Edalit, how did your reading in the Book of Mormon go?" And the first words out of her mouth were, "Well, it says that we need to get baptized to progress in life right?" (Cue Jacob's jaw dropping). I was like "Yes! And we want to talk to you both today about the gospel of Jesus Christ". So we taught the lesson, faith, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end. After this I asked Edalit if she had prayed about the Book of Mormon. She told me that she had prayed and received overwhelming feelings of peace and comfort and love. And then she said very confidently..."I know the Book of Mormon is true". Her husband then said he had felt the same feelings. I then challenged them to be baptized in two weeks and they both said "Yes!" without hesitation. They want to build a strong family together and they know our message is true because they actually read and prayed. I was so happy. I feel very blessed.

I have had the chance to read in the New Testament and this week I was in Luke and when I started reading this story, I felt the Spirit so strongly. I just want you all to read it as well and take your own message from it.

And one of the Pharisees desired him that he would eat with him. And he went into the Pharisee’s house, and sat down to meat. And, behold, a woman in the city, which was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisee’s house, brought an alabaster box of ointment, And stood at his feet behind him weeping, and began to wash his feet with tears, and did wipe them with the hairs of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed them with the ointment. Now when the Pharisee which had bidden him saw it, he spake within himself, saying, This man, if he were a prophet, would have known who and what manner of woman this is that toucheth him: for she is a sinner. And Jesus answering said unto him, Simon, I have somewhat to say unto thee. And he saith, Master, say on. There was a certain creditor which had two debtors: the one owed five hundred pence, and the other fifty. And when they had nothing to pay, he frankly forgave them both. Tell me therefore, which of them will love him most? Simon answered and said, I suppose that he, to whom he forgave most. And he said unto him, Thou hast rightly judged. And he turned to the woman, and said unto Simon, Seest thou this woman? I entered into thine house, thou gavest me no water for my feet: but she hath washed my feet with tears, and wiped them with the hairs of her head. Thou gavest me no kiss: but this woman since the time I came in hath not ceased to kiss my feet. My head with oil thou didst not anoint: but this woman hath anointed my feet with ointment. Wherefore I say unto thee, Her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little. And he said unto her, Thy sins are forgiven. And they that sat at meat with him began to say within themselves, Who is this that forgiveth sins also? And he said to the woman, Thy faith hath saved thee; go in peace.

Well, things are better. I am being more patient with myself, and with others, and thanking Heavenly Father everyday for the opportunity to represent his Son, and my Savior and Redeemer, Jesus Christ. What a privilege it is to wake up every morning and put his name on my chest and to go out and work on his behalf. I am so grateful that my Heavenly Father loves me. I can feel his love always when I seek after it. He is always with me. Through everything, he is walking with me. And the more I dedicate myself to him, the more I try to emulate my Savior and his attributes, the more I forget about "Jacob Nielsen" and start focusing on others, the more I feel his love. So much so that it flows over me. Hard times are going to always come. But we can face them always with confidence and without fear because we know that Jesus Christ is the Savior of our souls and we know that we have a loving Heavenly Father that will always protect us, and guide us as we draw ourselves closer to him and his will. 

Well, I love you all very much. I miss you but I am so excited to be here, climbing the mountain and trying to enjoy and learn from every second of it. Your prayers, letters (thank you Buckners and Fowles and Gina!), and emails mean so very much to me. Just go out and work, love, and live. That is what I am trying to do everyday. And enjoy it! We have cambios (or transfers) this week so I will let you know what happens!
Until Next Week!

Elder Nielsen

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